Cosmetics - Hourglass at Harvey Nichols Manchester

Learn more about how to apply make-up that suits my skin, age and personality

Learn more about how to apply make-up that suits my skin, age and personality - Credit:

With literally hundreds of cosmetic brands already on the market, how does a newcomer make their mark? Hourglass, now in Harvey Nichols Manchester, seems to have the answer.

Hourglass isn’t new to the beauty scene, arriving in 2004, but it’s new to Manchester and arrived just as the party season was ramping up the energy levels. Launched by beauty industry veteran Carisa Janes, Hourglass sits neatly at the point where luxury, technology and ethics intersect. Hourglass prides itself on being ‘100% cruelty free’, meaning that none of their products are ever tested on animals and they don’t use animal hair in their brushes (which are fabulous, by the way) and offer a wide collection of vegan and gluten free products too.

Ever keen to learn more about how to apply make-up that suits my skin, age and personality, I booked myself an appointment at the concession in Harvey Nichols Manchester.

I was met, on a quiet Monday lunchtime, by a simply lovely young woman, Jodie. Initially a little intimidated by her perfect make-up (I will never achieve those heights, no matter how many lessons I have!) she very quickly set me at ease and got me chatting about my skin type and make-up wants and needs, before setting about transforming my look for the day.

Hourglass offer a range of three primers: a multi-purpose oil free version; a light correcting tinted version; and a primer-serum in one. Oh my, the light correcting option is really super, smoothing the skin and reducing any redness before foundation is applied. I’ve used it since and not needed foundation over the top! Hourglass offer a foundation stick, which at first is a little daunting, but once you’ve scattered short stripes across the skin it’s very like the liquid form I usually favour and the brush used to blend it in is utterly fabulous. It was all-day light and all-day present, making it ideal for women with no time (or desire) to top-up.

Eye make-up comes in a very limited range of shades, but these are all packed into a single compact, creating a dizzying variation of colour mixes you can create. ‘Soft and flattering, daytime smoky’ was my desire – and Jodie really delivered.

There’s something very relaxing about having a professional make-up artist doing your make-up for you. As she brushed and blended she carefully talked me through each stage, demonstrating colours and placement of shades and really listening, and responding to, my own personal wishes. With skill and deliberation, she not only gave me perfect photo-ready skin and eyes, but showed me how to do it myself next time, boosting my confidence and actually making me a little braver.

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I had had no plans to go out that night, but there was no way I was wasting my beautifully made-up face on the TV, so cocktails it was, and not so much as an eyelash needed re-doing, even seven hours later.

Hourglass @ Harvey Nichols Manchester

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